Tuesday, 16 February 2010

Shoes, solids and a big hello to the Source

Hola folks! Its good to know that I am now out and proud for the gorgeous (seriously, you look fab today: loving the hair) readers of www.thesourcemag.net to peruse at will. I solemnly promise to try and entertain you in between bursts of self-obsessed vitriol and shoe lust and the like, not forgetting the many twists and tangents which reflect the flighty state of my postnatal mind. I started this blog (ugh, I know - its a terrible word, have been thinking so ever since my friend Josie pointed it out, and now I'd quite like to rename it something less reminiscent of berks in lumberjack shirts) because I love to write, don't do it enough, and felt that waxing comical re being a ditzy new mum could be fairly appropriate when living in an area so brimming with bundles of joy that they're as common as a sperm at a wife swap. So in short: welcome, wilkommen, bienvenue, shalom - it's great to be here *does cyber-skip*.

Now: shoes. Don't worry, am not one of these SJP types who wears my Louboutins (or even owns Louboutins) to Sainsburys of a morning, but this week I have had a MAJOR shoe moment (and yes, I feel like a tit for saying "major shoe moment"). Was taking a stroll down Portobello Market, thinking about the shadowy mogul types trying to take over the area by means of stealth purchase; a very depressing muse which led to a dash into Office to check out the sale rack. And there they were: one pair of purple, snakeskin sandals in the multi-strappy, vertiginous style which has been a la mode ever since I got knocked up; distant, mythical symbols of girlydom which have got me weeping with lifestyle jealousy when flicking through the fashion pages of any publication. And there they were. In my size. Marked down from £80 to £10. Wowzers.

So of course I had to have them: at that price, its worth it just to have them casually lying around the living room as if at any moment I could be about to slip them on with a sparkly shrug and an oversized (though not quite large enough to stow a changing mat) clutch. Just listen to the online description: "Super-tough but sexy strappy slingbacks with a skyscraper of a stiletto heel. Series of straps and buckles link up to a gladiator-style leather front to make a serious statement." Does that piece of provocative alliteration sound anything like the shoes required by a new mum-not-really-about-town? They are divine, and I have literally no use for them whatsoever. Unless you count wearing them to feed the D-Bubz his porridge (which I have), or teaming them with ski socks for some classic 'lounging @ home' chic (which I haven't...yet).

Seriously, I don't know when I'll next be dancin', really dancin' (and wouldn't be, in spiky 4-inchers, for long - I'm not a Saturday, or even Girl Aloud), or going to a semi-posh party. In fact, the D-Bubz has yet to encounter any kind of babysitter. So to commemorate my first Source blog and ensure these bad girls get a public airing at some point, can anyone suggest a suitable venue that's both child-friendly and uber-glam? (All suggestions welcomed.) This whole shoe episode just reminds me that I should be reading Home & Garden, not Glamour: I feel like I've taken voluntary fashion redundancy and am now in a river in Egypt. Ooh, chunky bangles! Very practical when you risk giving your wee boy a shiner every time you pick him up. Little halterneck number! Fabulous with a nursing bra. Latest eyeshadow trend! Just what you need at Baa-Baa Babies. I could probably wing it through my days with nothing more than some concealer and a good pair of boyfriend jeans, although where's the fun in that? So I continue with my purchasing and flicking through the mags and cooing at anything sparkly: delusion, it's so 2010.

In other news, D-Bubz is now On Solids. This doesn't mean he is ordering steak cooked medium rare and casually butter-and-salting bread rolls; rather, he is now the enthusiastic consumer of baby porridge, and it's quite a milestone in his young life. It's also quite a scary one for moi: not only do I now have to keep stuff sterilised, but am starting to realise the extent of his appetite. I am going to be feeding him pretty much forever, and the worst thing is, I think I like it. But it's yet another reminder that my gorgeous little boy won't be little for long - the strange thing about motherhood, which no-one really mentions, is the slight sadness marking every development. Like when his baby hair suddenly fell out at 4 weeks to be replaced soon after by his proper hair; I actually cried. Bittersweet, it is, and I am trying to savour every moment, every tiny change.

In other other news, I am increasingly concerned by The State Of Our House which is reaching crisis point - the heap of clothes in my bedroom has recently acquired a small flag on its summit - and so I think it could be time to bite that crunchy metal bullet and phone a friend. To get her cleaner's number. But cleaners and me, we don't really work. I remember my mum having one when I was younger: a total glamazon with waist-length blonde hair and improbably long scarlet nails for someone in the habit of wielding a hoover for others. She was also sarkier than Russell Brand after a shag-free week, which I took as a side-effect of having to sort out our washing. Anyway, she scared the beejesus out of moi, and that was the end of my cleaner experience until many years later, when sharing a house with three other women, all reluctant to do the bathroom on a regular basis, when we enlisted the services of another glamazon, this time the nearly-6-foot, basketball playing Scandinavian Iva, who mopped her way like a towering whirlwind for several hours every other Friday. I was so mortified about having her come when I was, to all intents and purposes, a student, that I would hide away to avoid having to communicate with her athletic and capable (yet slightly English language-challenged) self, but we developed quite a good relationship in the end, based on me skulking and her jumping out at me.

Iva's days were sadly numbered when she gave Carys' trailing spider plant a geometric bob without asking (to be fair, it was taking over the kitchen), which we only found out after each housemate had been interviewed re said plant bobbing and all sworn we hadn't touched it, guv (while it annoyed the piss out of everyone, we still didn't have the brainwave of attacking it with scissors). Anyway, she probably wasn't too upset - I'd have hated to clear up after us lot. And the rest is messy history - to get a cleaner, you have to sort out your clutter, and I'm the kind of person who only wouldn't have clutter if I didn't have a stick of furniture, and even then I'd probably just make a pile on the floor, so the thought of bringing one into our lives always felt like an act of cruelty (towards the cleaner). But I grow weary of this never-ending attempt to become anally retentive, and weary of my shock and awe when I visit the spit and polish-scented abodes of more sensible friends, like a child visiting Disneyland and getting a hug from Captain Jack Sparrow. So in the next couple of weeks, I'm giving the cleaner thing another whirl. Otherwise, I could end up dusting the bookshelves in my new shoes, which is a pretty dangerous scenario for everyone...

Mother In The Hood xxx

Friday, 12 February 2010

Twit-twoo & Tenerife

Some things on Twitter are very how I expect them to be - like Kirsty Allsopp and India Knight's love-in, which I discovered at around the time of the Labour conference, and had them talking dirty re Peter Mandelsohn (until this other chick, who I assumed was the guest star in their threesome, got a bit carried away and reprinted the lyrics to Mandy in capitals; India advised her to open a window and BREATHE.) Actually I must go and see what they're saying about McQueen, although I shouldn't as it makes me want to celebrate his genius by going and blowing my life savings on a collection of his frocks then drinking Bellinis in a gorgeous hotel bar and toasting him repeatedly, both of which are not really an option right now.

What I'm trying to say is, that kind of pithy warm celeb/meeja-banter between two 'mind-like-a-steel-trap-but-still-va-va-voom-to-the-max' types reminds me why - despite being a recent addict of Facebook "for crap signal" Mobile, which is great when I'm feeding Dylan but means I can't read the really long email thread I've been on for a year (it has been updated during the year, mind you, or I wouldn't be able to open it at all - to paraphrase one of its participants, those girls can really talk, and so can I, though rather more sporadically since I co-created the D-Bubz) - I don't really do Twitter.

Aside from the small matter of having 7, now unaccountably 6, followers, and not having said much since "Wish i liked daytime tv, this waiting is getting v v dull. On the agenda today? Cleaning out fridge. I rest my case.. " back in the summer when I was eager to drop my sprog already, I feel too inadequate to get out there and start trying to trade asides with the likes of Stephen Fry (Twitter edition - frank and touching missives, although on the touchy side, bless and love him), and the various Fearnes, Frankies and even bloody Peaches who are doing quite a bit more with their day than me right now. And I realise I didn't have to look them up, but somehow it happened. So please take this as an invitation to add me on Twitter if you can be bovvered, because I secretly want to get it happening over there... www.twitter.com/lisamcmama

Anyway, I was going to publish my long diary bit on the first few days of our trip to the Canary Islands, but the html won't copy and I need to give my infant some attention before he starts wailing like Scooby Doo after a faux ghost sighting. So I'll give you a few details off the cuff instead. The hotel we stayed in Tenerife (excuse me while I check my toiletries) was the Iberostar Anthelia (I'd love to know who their marble supplier was, because that reception was pretty spectacular, although I didn't manage to get any pics of it). http://www.iberostar.com/EN/Tenerife-hotels/Iberostar-Anthelia_3_24.html?pest=228

Here's a link to rave reviews on Tripadvisor, apart from one moany one, but there's always one, isn't there? http://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/Hotel_Review-g315919-d285140-Reviews-Iberostar_Grand_Hotel_Anthelia-Adeje_Tenerife_Canary_Islands.html I thought our rooms were stunning, we had two adjoining ones as a family, both with gorgeous bathrooms and lovely balconies, I had no complaints whatsoever, and I thought the buffet restaurant was pretty fabulous too - after missing the first day of the trip due to our effing cancelled flight, when we finally arrived the following evening I was most gutted that I'd missed 2x dinners and 1x breakfast, and FYI you can have Cava with breakfast - highly recommended although I sadly couldn't indulge in case it all went very Pete Tong (or indeed not Pete Tong enough).

Hope you like the picture of little Miss H in the saltwater pool - I wish I'd got to spend more time there, but the kids wanted the heated one, always a good sign when the barman brings round mini cups of sangria as the clock strikes 11am, don't you think? I also didn't make it to the beach, but the hotel had fabulous sea/mountain views. J went on a mountain biking trip with the other dads, which Miss H was loath to let him go on but I felt one of us needed to see the surrounding countryside. Me, I saw the countryside of the local shopping centre on a much-needed stress-busting meander with the Danish and Swedish mums, where I bought a bright blue trench in the Mango sale for 25 Euros, which (although more luggage was the last thing I needed, we had insane amounts of stuff for a week long trip) has been on my back pretty nearly every day since we returned, I love it!

Oh and I was sent the link to the video of our audition and interview, which is incredibly cringey but I suppose I should share it...here you go *screams*:


I'm off to hide...

Monday, 8 February 2010

Burgers and milkshakes and fries, oh my!

Gluttony has cast a sizeable shadow over us this weekend (we took my mum to the Belvedere and then spent Sunday's luncheon at a gorgeous pub in Potten, Cambs), and spilled into Monday, where we've ended up having lunch at the diner on top of all that over-indulgence (there's really no excuse for burger with extra gherkin + shake + fat fries + onion rings, under banner of breastfeeding or otherwise) but anyway its been fab. Still haven't managed to post my Canaries blog, which I need to finish off but as I'm writing it like a weekly diary, which I didn't keep on the hol as there just wasn't time, its not quite done. Thought I'd pop in in the meantime to say that despite the gluttony and the wishing ourselves back in the Canary Islands, now I feel energised and ready for spring, although its still a long way off we've still got lots of things happening and it seems a time of possibility on many levels.

Dylan getting that bit bigger is also making me more serene; he's turned four months and has just started on a small daily bowl of baby rice as well as his milk. He LOVED it the first two times, got the hang on it on the second go, but wasn't so keen yesterday when I made it slightly thicker due to scanty supply of milk, and had just woken up after a car journey. Anyway, its a big step, which I took very seriously against the current NHS guidelines of waiting til they're six months, but I think thats partly them trying to protect a new generation of impoverished youngsters against the horrors of blended Big Macs before your first birthday. So as Dylan's a big boy and a hungry one, I've gone old school on his ass, just to see if he likes it. He slept through last night for the first time in nearly a month, so it may already be chilling him out.

We're so lucky, though, he is the happiest baby in the world; doing his Janice from Friends laugh with shining eyes, and is always really chirpy in the mornings (a bit like me). And he was so good during our various restaurant visits, either sleeping or looking around the place - at the Belvedere, he slept the entire time, enjoying the sound of the pianist as he drifted off, and didn't wake up until after the ride home. Thanks D-Bubz! He's looking very chunky and blokey all of a sudden and has now got proper leg definition, no more Mr Chicken Legs.

So I would still sell my soul for a cleaner (although J is still against it and I can't particularly justify it except to say I'd have more time to do other, more creative things) and am going through the household products like mad. Talking of products, apparently Fairy are bringing back the old style bottle for their 50th anniversary - should go down well with the current love of all things retro, and while I am not old enough to actually remember what they made with them on Blue Peter (honest guv), it still gives me a pleasantly nostalgic feeling, embarrassing but true.

Anyway I'll be back, soon....hope you're all well. Can't believe how much this winter is flashing by, think that week in the Canaries really helped, on which I will finally be dishing the dirt any minute now. Sorry to be so crap but I've been working on a fiction project in those few moments when am not busy with mothering/chores/relaxing when baby asleep....its inspired by my younger years, pregnancy and Gok Wan and I think its got potential!